Lying by Promising. A study on insincere illocutionary acts

International Review of Pragmatics 8 (2):271-313 (2016)
Download Edit this record How to cite View on PhilPapers
Abstract
This paper is divided into two parts. In the first part, I extend the traditional definition of lying to illocutionary acts executed by means of explicit performatives, focusing on promising. This is achieved in two steps. First, I discuss how the utterance of a sentence containing an explicit performative such as “I promise that Φ ” can count as an assertion of its content Φ . Second, I develop a general account of insincerity meant to explain under which conditions a given illocutionary act can be insincere, and show how this applies to promises. I conclude that a promise to Φ is insincere (and consequently a lie) only if the speaker intends not to Φ , or believes that he will not Φ , or both. In the second part, I test the proposed definition of lying by promising against the intuitions of ordinary language speakers. The results show that, unlike alternative accounts, the proposed definition makes the correct predictions in the cases tested. Furthermore, these results challenge the following necessary conditions for telling a lie with content p: that you have to assert p directly; that you have to believe that p be false; that p must be false; that you must aim to deceive the addressee into believing that p.
PhilPapers/Archive ID
MARLBP-2
Revision history
Archival date: 2016-09-16
View upload history
References found in this work BETA

No references found.

Add more references

Citations of this work BETA
Lying and Certainty.Neri Marsili - 2018 - In Jörg Meibauer (ed.), The Oxford Handbook of Lying. Oxford University Press. pp. 170-182.
You Don't Say! Lying, Asserting and Insincerity.Neri Marsili - 2017 - Dissertation, University of Sheffield

Add more citations

Added to PP index
2016-08-17

Total views
266 ( #10,067 of 37,983 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
82 ( #4,227 of 37,983 )

How can I increase my downloads?

Monthly downloads since first upload
This graph includes both downloads from PhilArchive and clicks to external links.